What’s Holding Jordan Downs Back?

The Housing Project’s Much Anticipated Redevelopment Keeps Getting Delayed by Bureaucracy, Funding, and Nasty Underground Surprises

This is the year the transformation of Jordan Downs, a sprawling housing project in the heart of Watts, finally begins. So, where’s the fanfare? The story is a long one, rich with insight into how Los Angeles does and doesn’t work, both above ground and below.

Later this summer — if things go according to schedule— bulldozers and demolition crews will rumble down South Los Angeles’ Alameda Street corridor, turn into Jordan Downs, and begin demolishing some of the 700-plus cinderblock houses lined up like dominoes ready to fall for the …